Date of Award
Master of Arts in Education
Research on learning style based instruction has indicated its importance as a valuable tool for academic success, and improved self- concept has been viewed as a by- product of this success . Additional research has labelled self-concept as a noncognitive correlate of learning style . The relationship between knowledge of one's personal learning style and self-concept has needed to be explored. Yet, very few studies about the effect on self-concept, after being taught about ones learning style, have been conducted . Hemispheric dominance and modality preferences are formed at an early age with self- concept also being fairly well-shaped before the middle grades. Therefore, first grade would seem to be the logical time for the influence of l earning about one's personal learning style and its effect on self-concept to be studied.
For this study, learning style was defined as multi- dimensional, encompassing the cognitive, affective, and perceptual modalities of each student's personal learning style . Based on this definition of learning style, the Learning Style Inventory by Price and Dunn, and the Learning Style Inventory: Primary Version by Janet Perrin were administered to 28 randomly selected students from a first grade population of 57 students. The experimental group of students was taught about their personal learning styles in the perceptual modality; auditory, visual, or tactual/kinesthetic; as indicated by their responses to the inventories. Teacher accommodation was used for other element preferences. Learning style based activities designed by the Oklahoma State Department of Education were presented during eight half-hour sessions over a four-month period. After participating in these activities, the self-concept of students in the experimental group was compared to the control group using the Early School Self-Concept Inventory by Kenneth Meehan, and the North York Self- Concept Inventory: Primary by Patricia Crawford, to determine whether teaching students about their personal learning style had improved their self-concept.
When the self- concept test mean scores for the experimental and control groups were compared, they were not significantly different . The mean scores for both groups were within a few points of each other when comparisons were made between low achievers in both groups , boys in both groups, and when each of the perceptual modality subgroups; visual, auditory, and tactual/kinesthetic; were compared to the control group . The t-tests also did not reveal any significant differences.
Several underlying factors and limitations influenced the results of this study , begim1ing with inconsistent student responses on the inventories and a comparison of these responses with a factor analysis study conducted on the instrument . The positive feedback received from parents and students involved in the study was not measured in the self-concept inventories . This has left the door open for future research in this area .
Achurch, Jacquelyn, "Does Teaching First Grade Students About Their Personal Learning Styles Improve Their Self-Concepts?" (1986). Theses. 449.
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